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Typical McKinsey PEI questions?

McKinsey McKinsey PEI PEI
New answer on Aug 17, 2021
6 Answers
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Anonymous E asked on Jul 15, 2019

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Content Creator
replied on Jul 16, 2019
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.500+) | 1.500+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ | Ex BCG | 10Y+ Coaching

Hi Anonymous,

the PEI at McKinsey is structured around three key dimensions, leadership, impact and drive. I have provided a description for them below:

1) Leadership is about leading a whole team in a challenging situation and showing team management skills. Questions include:

  1. Give me three examples of a time that you lead a group. 

  2. What are some key lessons you have learned about motivating people? 

Here you want to emphasize how you overcome a difficult situation leading a team.

2) Personal Impact is mainly based on persuading someone about doing/not doing something. Questions include:

  1. Tell me about a time that you persuaded your boss to go along with an idea you had.
  2. Tell me about a difficult situation where you had to rely on your communication skills. 

Here you want to emphasize your influence on someone else, usually in disagreement with you.

3) Entrepreneurial Drive is about implementing something overcoming major difficulties. Examples include:

  1. What was a situation where you set a major goal and been able to achieve it?
  2. What has been your major accomplishment so far?

Here you want to emphasize the achievement you reached and the process that led you there.

Besides the previous dimensions, common questions also include:

  • Tell me about yourself
  • Why consulting
  • Why McKinsey
  • Why should we hire you



Content Creator
replied on Jul 17, 2019
McKinsey offers w/o final round interviews - 100% risk-free - 10+ years MBB coaching experience - Multiple book author
replied on Jul 15, 2019
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School


The interviewer usually asks 3 sets of questions:

1) “Tell me about yourself” or “walk me through your resume”- this is how Consultants usually begin the interview. It's an opportunity for them to learn about you and to pick some interesting facts. Don’t lose this opportunity since the 1st impression is usually the strongest.

2) “Why consulting?”, “Why McKinsey” questions are used to assess your motivation to be a consultant in general and to work in that particular firm. They will check how you have done your homework and what you’ve learned about them. They also want to make sure that you have a clear intention to work in consulting. "Why consulting" is a question about you and your career path. "Why McKinsey" is more about a particular company and even particular local office.

3) Next, the interviewer will also ask you to provide examples from your background:

  • Leadership
  • Personal impact (How you persuaded someone)
  • Achievement / entrepreneurial drive (depending on the office)

At the end of the interview, you will also have an opportunity to ask your questions to the interviewer. Most of the candidates disregard this part in the preparation, while it is a great chance to demonstrate the intellectual capacity and build some relationship with the interviewer.


Content Creator
replied on Aug 17, 2021
1300 5-star reviews across platforms | 500+ offers | Highest-rated case book on Amazon | Uni lecturer in US, Asia, EU
Anonymous replied on May 27, 2020


They will be asking the following:
 Tell me about yourself (Walk me through your resume)
 Why consulting
 Why McKinsey
 The story about leadership (How you've taken an initiative and led the people
to achieve something)
 The story about Personal Impact (How you persuaded people)
 Entrepreneurial Drive (Innovative solutions that you are proud of most)
 Your questions to the interviewer
In "Tell me about yoursef" you should be talking about your career path till now.
You can finish this story with an argument about why consulting is the next logical
career step.

I would recommend the following structure:
1. Start with a 1 sentence summary of your background, why you are relevant
for McKinsey and what's your unique selling point

2. Talk about 3-4 of your roles (may be professional, education,
extracurricular), 3 sentences each. The more experienced you are the more
you should speak about professional roles. It can be also the distinct roles
within the same organization.

Typical structure: 1) What was the company 2)
What you were responsible for 3) Greatest achievement in that role, that will
stay in the memory of the interviewer (E.g. While working at Adidas supply
chain I was personally responsible for the delivery of soccer balls to the
Worldcup in Africa)

3. The main reason why consulting (or this firm if you were a consultant before)
is the next logical career step for you



Content Creator
replied on May 27, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut


On top of the insights already shared in the post, next week will be pusblished in PrepLounge´s Shop material related.

In concrete, the "Integrated FIT guide for MBB". It provides an end-to-end preparation for all three MBB interviews, tackling each firms particularities and combining key concepts review and a hands-on methodology. Following the book, the candidate will prepare his/her stories by practicing with over 50 real questions and leveraging special frameworks and worksheets that guide step-by-step, developed by the author and her experience as a Master in Management professor and coach. Finally, as further guidance, the guide encompasses over 20 examples from real candidates.

Here I leave you the link >

Feel free to PM me for disccount codes!

Hope you find it useful!



Francesco gave the best answer


Content Creator
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.500+) | 1.500+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ | Ex BCG | 10Y+ Coaching
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